Do you see that haphazard, mismanaged box of game sleeves? That is a cardboard treasure trove of used DS games. GameStop is in the midst of doing to the DS what it’s done most recently with the PS2. The games are being cleared out. Not all games, mind you. You can still see used copies of DS Pokemon games on the racks. No, it’s clearing out the lesser known, rarer games. The time has come to do a bit of treasure hunting.
Take that box above. When I dug through it, I’d say there were at least 50 used DS games shoved into it. Not to mention, there were 7 empty sleeves, which I turned in at the counter when I made my purchases. You would think it filled with shovelware games, however, I found rarities. Gems, if you’d prefer. For example, ever hear of Hotel Dusk 215? It’s an adventure game from Nintendo and Cing with a film-noir edge. There was a $4.99 copy in that box. $4.49, if you’ve got the PowerUp Rewards Pro membership.
Surprisingly enough, I found a good ratio of shovelware to rarities as I explored the used DS game boxes at three GameStops in Mount Prospect, Skokie and Bloomingdale, IL. I don’t mean to brag, but I saw, and left with, some of the following. Standard used prices are shown with the PowerUp Rewards Pro prices in parenthesizes after.
- Contact – $4.99 ($4.49)
- Dementium II – $4.99 ($4.49)
- Elite Beat Agents – $3.99 ($3.49)
- Feel the Magic – $0.99 ($0.88)
- Henry Hatsworth in the Puzzling Adventure – $2.99 ($2.49)
- Heroes of Mana – $7.99 ($7.49.)
- Hotel Dusk 215 – $4.99 ($4.49)
- Jake Hunter: Detective Chronicles – $2.99 ($2.69)
- Lost Magic – $2.99 ($2.69)
- Lufia: Curse of the Sinistrals – $9.99 ($8.99)
- Metroid Prime Pinball – $6.99 ($6.49)
- Moon – $4.99 ($4.49)
- Mr. Driller Spirits – $1.99 ($1.49)
- Mystery Dungeon: Shiren the Wanderer – $1.99 ($1.49)
- Populous – $2.99 ($2.49)
- Ragnarok DS – $9.99 ($8.99)
- Retro Game Challenge – $4.99 ($4.49)
- Sands of Destruction – $9.99 ($8.99)
- Sprung – $0.99 ($0.88)
- Theresia – $2.99 ($2.49)
- Time Hollow – $2.99 ($2.49)
- Touch Detective – $3.99 ($3.49)
- Touch Detective 2 1/2 – $2.99 ($2.49)
- Trace Memory – $2.99 ($2.49)
- Valkyrie Profile: Covenant of the Plume – $2.99 ($2.49)
- WarioWare: Touched – $6.99 ($6.49)
- A Witch’s Tale – $9.99 ($8.99)
Okay, I admit it. I bought Sprung. It’s a gift, I assure you. I couldn’t resist for $0.88.
The downside to this massive, used DS games buffet is that almost every game is unavailable online. If you want one, you have to take part in the hunt. The GameStop website can offer hints as to whether or not a particular game is in your vicinity, but that’s it. Fortunately, if you call ahead, you can have a GameStop employee hold a copy of a game for you, like I did with the Bloomingdale GameStop’s sole copy of A Witch’s Tale.
If you’ve got the time and own a DS or 3DS, you really should stop by GameStop. The used DS game assortment is really lovely. Just be aware that all of these pre-owned games do not have their boxes or instruction manuals. You’re just getting the cartridge for the prices above. Still, even die-hard collectors may be willing to accept that loss when they’re getting great games for under $10, or even $5.